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Backgrounder: What's The Deal In Philly?
Philadelphia hosts the NFL Draft, April 27-29, 2017—and this city has plenty of stories to tell. Here’s a brief lowdown on the city’s history, food, neighborhoods, sports, beer and other key areas of interest:
Philadelphia is the birthplace of the United States and the country’s first World Heritage City. Our Founding Fathers met, discussed, debated and formed a new country in Philadelphia. The two most important documents in our history, the Declaration of Independence and U.S. Constitution, were drafted and signed here. Independence Hall, one of only 20 World Heritage sites in the country, stands just steps
What's In The Chinatown Neighborhood?
Beyond the colorful Friendship Arch at 10th and Arch Streets lives Philly’s vibrant Asian enclave, settled in the mid-19th century by Cantonese immigrants. Stretching from Vine to Arch Streets between 9th and 12th Streets, the neighborhood is packed end to end with restaurants and stores that represent Hong Kong, Cantonese, Fujianese, Northern Sichuan and Taiwanese cultures, with a sprinkling of Korean, Thai, Malaysian, Burmese, Vietnamese and hipster thrown in for good measure. On any given day or night, Chinatown bustles with activity and authenticity, from the steaming platters of hand-stretched noodles to the seasonal street festivals...
Fact Sheet: VISIT PHILADELPHIA's 20-Year Timeline (1996-2016)
Started as a three-year experiment by the City of Philadelphia, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and The Pew Charitable Trusts, VISIT PHILADELPHIA® (then the Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation) is founded to market the five-county region as a leisure destination. An op-ed published in The Philadelphia Inquirer calls on the destination-marketing organization to fulfill the “Golden Promise” of a successful and economically vital travel and tourism industry in Philadelphia.
VISIT PHILADELPHIA advertises Philly on national TV for the first time in the city’s history. The advertising campaign This Is My Philadelphia positions the region as The...
Fact Sheet: Family Fun In Philadelphia
Historical Sites & Attractions:
- Wannabe sailors can visit the nation’s most decorated battleship, the Battleship New Jersey, and take tours of the ship, ride the 4-D flight simulator, climb into the onboard helicopter and sleep in the sailors’ bunks as part of its award-winning Overnight Encampment program. 62 Battleship Place, Camden, (856) 966-1652, battleshipnewjersey.org
- America’s most famous flag maker greets guests in her interactive 18th-century upholstery shop at the Betsy Ross House. Visitors learn about Betsy’s life and legend from the lady herself and Phillis the laundress, a historical re-enactor who portrays what life was like for
Fact Sheet: The Philadelphia Region
There are 4.0 million people residing in the five-county region (7.8 million in the Philadelphia Designated Market Area) and 1.6 million in Philadelphia, making it the second-largest city on the East Coast and the fifth-largest in the country. Center City ranks second in downtown populations in the U.S., behind New York City’s Manhattan.
Philadelphia is a two-hour drive from New York City, two-and-a-half hours from Washington, DC and 45 minutes from Atlantic City, with convenient access to the Pennsylvania Turnpike, I-76, I-95 and the New Jersey Turnpike. 25% of the United States population lives within 350
What's In The Fishtown Neighborhood?
Like its hip neighbor Northern Liberties, Fishtown has quickly become one of the coolest sections of Philadelphia, thanks to an influx of quality restaurants, inventive bars, impressive music venues and forward-thinking art galleries.
Philadelphians have found new and innovative uses for Fishtown ever since William Penn made peace with the Lenape Indians in what’s now Penn Treaty Park. It’s the only place in the city where, in the same evening, someone can buy a custom-made guitar, drink craft beer while playing Tetris, eat stellar Yugoslavian food and visit the world’s only pizza museum. Fishtown’s Frankford Avenue Arts Corridor serves as...
What's In the Callowhill Neighborhood?
Dubbed the “Loft District” by real estate developers and “The Eraser ’Hood” by locals referencing the once-dark landscape that inspired former resident David Lynch’s cult classic Eraserhead, Callowhill is something in between these two extremes. The stylish-yet-still-transforming neighborhood attracts both young professionals who enjoy its high-end condos and close proximity to Center City and artists looking for affordable-yet-expansive studio and gallery spaces. It’s a formerly industrial neighborhood that charms with a rich stock of large, urban buildings, remnants of cobblestone streets, edgy rock clubs, emerging galleries and the kind of hidden cultural gems that intrigue visitors and residents alike.
What's In The Pennsport & East Passyunk Neighborhoods?
For decades, insiders have flocked to South Philadelphia’s East Passyunk Avenue for its restaurants, particularly its red-gravy Italian spots. The neighborhood surrounding the avenue—a diagonal interruption to Philadelphia’s grid layout—has enjoyed revitalizations in recent years, especially on the food front, with many new restaurants opening and gaining enormous acclaim from The Philadelphia Inquirer, Philadelphia magazine and Eater, an influential online outlet that put East Passyunk eateries in nine of the top 10 spots on the winter 2016 edition of its Eater 38 list of essential Philadelphia’s restaurants.
Visitors who stroll down Passyunk (pronounced pashunk by those in the know) find...
Fact Sheet: Philazillas Commercial
Name of Spot: Philazillas
Tagline: There’s more to a legendary city than its legends.
Spot Overview: Part of VISIT PHILADELPHIA’s With Love, Philadelphia XOXO® campaign, the fun, over-the-top commercial honors the city’s beloved icons (cheesesteaks and Benjamin Franklin) while showing off the many other enjoyments (waterfronts, parks, restaurants, bars, culture, walkability, etc.) that make the city such a popular place to visit and stay overnight.
In “Philazillas,” a larger-than-life Ben Franklin and a just-as-big cheesesteak vie for the spotlight during an outrageous tiff that leaves a visitor asking, “What’s with them?,” and her taxi driver responding,...
What's In The Chestnut Hill, Germantown & Mt. Airy Neighborhoods?
Chestnut Hill (via the Chestnut Hill East/West train lines or the #23 Bus):
With a higher elevation than the rest of the city, Chestnut Hill was once a vacation spot for those who wanted to escape the summer heat of the lower-lying parts of the city. Today, the neighborhood’s eclectic shops and renowned eateries, most along cobblestoned Germantown Avenue, continue to make it a cool place to visit.
- Bredenbeck’s Bakery & Ice Cream Parlor – Open since 1889, this charming shop scores big with locals who adore its cakes, cupcakes, pies and, of course, ice cream. Throughout the
What's In The Fairmount And Spring Garden Neighborhoods?
Just near the renowned institutions that line the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia’s Fairmount and Spring Garden neighborhoods are often lumped together and dubbed the “Art Museum area,” but the personalities of these laid-back districts separate them from nearby Center City.
Fairmount easily stands on its own as a destination in Philadelphia. Despite its proximity to downtown, the residential neighborhood is considered a sort of urban suburb, thanks to the friendly residents and atmosphere. What to do here? Eat, drink and tour the former prison-turned-attraction.
Wedged between the cultural powerhouses of the Parkway and the better-known Fairmount, Spring Garden distinguishes itself...
Best Neighborhoods For Shopping In Philadelphia
From Center City to Bucks County, the Philadelphia region’s shopping neighborhoods are absolutely distinctive. Buzzing Old City in Historic Philadelphia has become renowned for its chic boutiques and mod galleries. Industrial and hip Northern Liberties offers shelter shops and craft galleries galore. In upscale Rittenhouse, refined and sophisticated rules at brand-name stores and owner-operated hotspots. And in New Hope, art-driven stores drive major foot traffic. One thing that’s consistent in every neighborhood in Pennsylvania: tax-free shopping on clothes and shoes. Here’s a look at what visitors will want to buy and where:
Center City Shopping Districts:
- Old City: Ben
Backgrounder: Spas & Salons
A vacation isn’t a vacation without at least an hour or two of pampering built in. Philadelphia day spas and salons are equipped to answer the call, offering clients a variety of luxurious customized services to refresh both body and spirit. They feature the latest in body treatments, relaxation therapy and beauty services—from the most basic of mani-pedis to deeply transformative Thai yoga massages to rejuvenating facials.
- Sleek and serene, Adolf Biecker Spa/Salon offers a full menu of hair, nail, facial and body-care services and packages such as “The Energizer,” including a Swedish massage, customized facial and lunch.
Bucks County: Bristol
Founded in 1681, the town of Bristol, Pennsylvania boasts a long and proud history. Located on the banks of the Delaware River, Bristol served an important role in both the Revolutionary and Civil wars, and at one time it was a major textile-milling center. The old-world influence still exists today, as evidenced by the town’s many antique shops, historic mansions and significant landmarks.
Along the riverfront, several statues pay tribute to such icons as Christopher Columbus and Harriet Tubman. Two other important figures for the town: textile-milling tycoon Joseph R. Grundy and his sister and library advocate Margaret
Montgomery County: Jenkintown
One of the oldest boroughs in Montgomery County, Jenkintown brims with historical interest and secret finds. In this residential community, visitors find National Landmarks, an active art scene and shops and restaurants.
Settled by William Jenkins in 1697, Jenkintown was incorporated in 1874. Among the quirkier holdovers from older days are the two fire companies founded in the 19th century. Both continue to serve the half-mile area today. Like many of the suburbs that surround Philadelphia, Jenkintown had its first heyday in the 19th and 20th centuries. A downtown revival in the 2000s, with the renovation of the
Montgomery County: Skippack
Quaint to its floorboards, Skippack embraces its historic appeal. Amid the covered bridge and old-fashioned lampposts, however, visitors find stylish gift stores and galleries and buzzing restaurants and bars that speak to a modern-day audience. With a mixture of European charm and hippie ease, this shopping-centric town has evolved through the years to become a popular tourist destination.
Skippack’s origins date back to 1683, when German settlers overran Germantown and moved by boat up the Perkiomen Creek to a place where the shallow water prohibited farther travel. There they stayed and named the land “Schippach.” In 1795, Jacob
Montgomery County: Ardmore
As the largest and most diverse town on the ritzy Main Line stretch of suburbs, Ardmore has a distinctly double character: It’s residential yet urban, independent yet central, historic yet forward-facing. Even the community itself straddles two counties (Ardmore is seated in Montgomery County, while South Ardmore is in Delaware County). Add to that some of the area’s best shopping, dining and nightlife, and visiting Ardmore is a multidimensional experience.
Once known as Athensville, the town was rechristened “Ardmore” by the Pennsylvania Railroad in 1873. The railroad also lent the town its transportation hub, and gave the “Main
Philadelphia County: Mt. Airy
Sometimes a name so perfectly defines a neighborhood that it creates a pretty accurate mental image. That’s Mt. Airy. Gently rising from the banks of the Wissahickon Creek, Mt. Airy, which is only 20 minutes from Center City, combines dense leafy park land, miles of multi-use trails, tree-lined streets and a historic cobblestoned business corridor that attracts aspiring entrepreneurs.
Mt. Airy’s varied architecture recounts its historic roots. Structures dating back to the 18th century sit alongside Victorian and 20th-century homes. The community’s Quaker roots might be one reason that Mt. Airy became a model of successful integration early...
Chester County: West Chester
Home to West Chester University, this quaint town in the Brandywine Valley exudes an energetic, young vibe. In the bustling downtown area, casual eateries and food-centric events satiate hungry palates, and throngs of charming shops line the streets.
As Chester County’s county seat, West Chester has a strong political history. The first biography of Abraham Lincoln, which was instrumental in his eventual election to the presidency, was published in The Lincoln Building on West Market Street in 1860. Downtown West Chester has since been listed on the National Register of Historic Places and recognized as a Distinctive Destination
What's on South Street?
Long known as the edgiest street in Philadelphia, South Street welcomes more than just hippies these days. Shoppers searching for a statement-making look, visitors hungry for a real Philly cheesesteak and music lovers who want to catch an up-and-coming band head to the storied boulevard. Also lining South are ethnically diverse restaurants, bars that keep the party going long after dessert, galleries and performance spaces.
Over the past decade, the development of South Street’s east side has spread west of Broad Street, but the traditional definition of the district (depending on who you ask) spans up to 14 blocks: Front...